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How to clean up your Facebook before you start applying for jobs

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by TheoGriff, Oct 6, 2010.

  1. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    Don't let your FaceBook spoil your chances of getting a job. Here's how to clean up your Facebook account BEFORE you start applying for jobs.
    Read this from the DT:
    Half of employers 'reject potential worker after look at Facebook page'

    Almost half of employers have rejected a potential worker after finding incriminating material on their Facebook pages, research has found.

    Bosses are now using the popular social networking site as a tool to double check how likely it would be that their new worker would take a sick day for being hungover or on drugs the night before.

    One in 10 were knocked back for boasting about drinking and drugs online, 13 per cent were vetoed for making racist comments and nine per cent were overlooked for placing racy photos on their Facebook page.
    Examples of online posts that have caught employers' eyes include:
    * Employee X "wishes his desk was near the television to watch the cricket at work "
    * "It's one para weekend for me".
    * "Tramp related hangover"

    Here's a site which gives advice on how to cleanup your Facebook account BEFORE you start applying for jobs.
    And the other place to look for tips on applications is the Welcome thread here on the JobSeekers Forum:
    Happy JobSeeking!
  2. Or one could simply alter their 'privacy' settings and choose their 'friends' wisely?
  3. AshgarMary

    AshgarMary New commenter

    It's more complex than that. If, say, you make a comment regarding a proprietal brand you are likely to find yourself come up on google!
    If you have a 'rare name' of course it makes matters worse!
    And on that point - what if there is someone with the same name as you 'misbehaving' or what if someone maliciously signs up with the same name as you? FB don't check (unless for some reason you come to their attention).
    Set up a google alert on your name so if anything does come through onto google you will at least know about it, even if there is nothing you can do about it! Once in google for ever in google. Companies pay a fortune to have 'bad press' pushed down to the higher page numbers where people rarely look on google.
    Probably best to assume that ANYTHING you write ANYWHERE on the internet has a high chance of becoming public at some point!

  4. AshgarMary

    AshgarMary New commenter

    Just read the dumblittleman link - would an employer really turn their nose up at you for being a member of pointless /silly groups? Don't they expect people to have a life?
    There goes my membership to the Chuck Norris Jokes group then ;)

  5. I believe the concern lies in the level of professionalism you are showing. Unlike a lot of other jobs and professions teachers are charged with safeguarding children from harm. More and more children now have access to websites such as Facebook. Curiousity will lead them to want to find out more about their teacher (have had 3 pupils attempt to add me before). Yes teachers are enrirled to a private life, however it doesn't mean that things of a dubious nature should be broadcast across a potential viewing area of not only prospective employers, but parents and children as well.
  6. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    One of the reasons I have never joined Facebook.
  7. I totally agree with acting in a professional manner on Facebook and obviously photos of you falling out of clubs, show your underwear is never going to go down well for any job! However, I think you can take Facebook with a pinch of salt! I'm 22 and have been using it since it first appeared over here. I have always had my profile set to maximum security and no-one but my carefully selected friends can view my profile, my pictures or any content on my profile. Facebook have made it easier to make it security tight now. I've tried googling myself or things from my Facebook page and I 100% do not come up on any search! I think if you have the right attitude, so sensible photos (I have photos from nights out but they are just photos of me with my friends smiling like a loon lol to photos from holidays or trips out), sensible status updates (I just don't understand people who write awful comments about children or staff at school let alone when they are Facebook friends with people from that school!) and members of no offensive groups then you'l be fine! Al my friends know i'm doing teacher training and so not to swear in comments if possible ... not thats anyone really does! S'all common sense! .... That said i know some schools are not keen on Facebook and so I do have friends who have dropped their surname from their profile and just use their first and middle name so no children could ever find them if they tried!
  8. Twitter is more of a concern, in my eyes, than facebook. Unless you have your Twitter feed set to "private" then every single thing is up for full public viewing. It's as easy to update it from your phone when drunk as facebook is, and photos can automatically be attached using other sites such as yfrog, twitpic and the like.
    Unlike facebook, there's no "friends" system and Google even has a part of its search page which automatically updates based on Twitter feeds. Many people even publish their Twitter streams on personal weg pages, Google profiles etc etc.
    Your best hope with that one is to ensure that your "real" name is in no way connected to your Twitter profile. Or just don't post any dodgy comments!
  9. Google my name and you will find a lot of letters and comments I have posted on the local paper, BBC and other comment sites. There is no hiding my views on education, my local area and politics. Nothing offensive - just my views.
    You will also find my sailing results and an old research paper I did in the 1990s.
  10. I'm stuffed then. I don't drink, and don't really go out to clubs etc, so there's never going to be any dodgy pics of me, drunken or hungover statuses, and I have very high security settings.

    However I also have an incredibly common name. Type my name into the search on FB and you get 5700 results. That many people and there is going to be someone with dodgy pics and inappropriate comments...
  11. We have been lectured on this at work lately. Apparently our union spends most of its time dealing with cases related to social networking sites.
    Simple, if you wouldn't want your mum/granny/child etc (insert as appropriate) to see it, then there is every chance that it shouldn't be on there.
    Don't put the year of your birth, your political views (unless they are clearly taking the p*ss), where you work etc.
    As previous posters have said, Common sense! Really. Change your privacy settings and DO NOT let ex students be your friend (after 5 years and moving out of the area, I have let an ex A level pupil with who I had a great (above board) relationship be my friend on a 'limited' setting status.

  12. AshgarMary

    AshgarMary New commenter

    Groups I've joined, comments I've made come up in Google. Luckily, they are 99.9% sensible!
    There are very few people with the same name as me and again, luckily, they seem to be highly respectable people with blameless lives breeding tea roses or some such.
    I do find that I have to keep a watch on Privacy Settings though - for some reason they seem to 'unset' themselves every few weeks - for example, I block all my friends from seeing my other friends. But every couple of months, it unblocks all by itself so I have to redo it.

  13. AshgarMary

    AshgarMary New commenter

    Btw it's not just Facebook that should concern people! Anyone using their real name on here is in for a big surprise if they google!

  14. I once googled my name and definitely got a big surprise - my name isn't massively common but is common enough for there to be about 100 of us on facebook alone - anyway, there is an author of erotic fiction (basically pornography) whose main character has my name, which is one of the top search results!
    There's not much I can really do about that one, but it is somewhat embarrassing...
  15. My concern is that other people can post photos and 'tag' you in them. So far they have not been more than silly ones of me looking gormless at some event or other but potentially they could be anything. I hate people taking my picture but now people all have camera phones it could be taken any time and slapped on facebook without any consent at all. I know some students who have suffered through this - they have been out and some kind 'friend' has posted a picture of them drunk as a skunk or whatever.
  16. You can always untag yourself, though - and as far as I've experienced, you can't retag someone in a photo where they've removed it themselves. [​IMG]
  17. You know, there is a name for looking at people's facebook in order to covertly find out about their private life. It's called "stalking". There is also a name for a person who would refuse a job based on someone's political views. That's called a "fascist". Personally, I would not want to work for a person or organisation who did ether of these as I'd regard them as morally bankrupt.

    Interestingly, the European Convention of Human Rights, Article 8 supports an individual's right to privacy, so employers who insist on trying to hack into people's facebook, despite privacy settings, may find themselves in court. Too many times, teaching organisations choose to ignore employment law and human rights. It's only a mater of time before one determined individual brings serious litigation against an employer.

    Personally, I'd be pleased to be rejected by employers like this!
  18. AshgarMary

    AshgarMary New commenter

    At least on FB you do have the option to untag. While FB has its faults, people forget that anyone can post anything about you anytime in many other ways - blog sites, photo hosting sites, whatever. "You can't stop progress" Bill the Battler - Muriels Wedding.
    Companies spend a lot of money getting their reputation cleaned up by ensuring the bad stuff only comes up on page 10 of Google or whatever where most people never go. (Did I write that earlier - sorry if I repeat myself!) - once it's out there, you can't call it back.

  19. if you have your profile closed to the public then no else but your friends can see anything
  20. Moony

    Moony Lead commenter

    A few months ago i went and changed my name onface book away from being my real name to being a fake name. One of two people would actually connect that name to me but it's not something i've used in a long time. I've also got my security settings fairly tight and i never post my own picture for a profile picture. Aside from that as much as i do get the fact that as teachers we're in a position of power/responcibility etc I'm still entitled to be myself outside of work and so long as no teacher is horrendously stupid about these things i really don't think it's anyone elses concern what we do. Yes i am a member of some silly groups on facebook, but there are also quite a few non silly ones there, and irrispective of what sort they are they're all indicative of me as a person.

    And whoever said it above about us being entitled to privacy via the human rights act is spot on. In a previous incarnation (i.e.my job before teaching) i had some human rights act training and it was a key part of my job. We do have a right to out privacy, it is forfit if we're using our privacy to plot the whole sale destruction of a residential area with things like bombs but then i think thats something your average teacher isn't likely to do so theres nothing to worry about.

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